Football, the world’s most followed sport has seen its fair share of penalties, be it in the club or international level. Penalties are always an added opportunity, as it allows the attacking team to score a goal from a one-on-one scenario, the defending side, however, faces a difficult challenge to stop the spot-kick. Footballers have often experimented with their penalties over the years, they are quick to invent unique techniques to create an edge over the goalkeepers. One such penalty technique is the ‘Panenka’, it is considered as the most beautiful spot-kick technique in the history of the sport.
What exactly is the ‘PANENKA’ penalty? Who invented it and when?
Panenka is an iconic penalty technique where the penalty taker gives a subtle touch exactly underneath the football, that causes it to rise and fall inside the centre of the goal, it is a smart technique meant to deceive the goalkeepers. Players usually kick the ball towards the left or right and top or bottom corner of the goal, but ‘Panenka’ is a different challenge, it comes with a certain risk as the goalkeeper can stand still and easily catch the slow chipping ball.
Antonin Panenka introduced the epic ‘Panenka’ penalty technique to the world of football and till date, it leaves people in awe. The former Czech Republican footballer who is now 67 years old, invented the ‘Panenka’ penalty back in the 1976 European Championships final against West Germany. The ‘Panenka’ penalty is historic not only for its crazy and unique technique but also because of the fact that it won Czechoslovakia the Euro 1976.
Why are referees the victims of the blame-game when it comes down to penalties?
Referees are constantly under pressure throughout the football fixture, and one of the many things that change the course of a match is the decision to whether or not to award a penalty. While referees have been criticised for their influential decisions, one needs to understand that people are bound to make wrong decisions sometimes, and referees are no exception. In football, the referees who are considered as the gatekeepers of the game, have given controversial decisions time and again, after all, they too are human beings. Fans who always rant and chant abuse towards the officials need to understand that the wrong decisions which they make help them learn to rectify future conclusions.